Polygamists in the Bible

Research by Jay Carper



Did Right Name Description Numbers Reference
+ Abdon judge of Israel 40 sons Judges 12:14
+ Abijah godly king of Judah who opposed godless Jereboam 14 wives 2 Chronicles 13:21
+ Abraham Patriarch and friend of God at least 2 wives and 1 concubines Genesis 16:3; 25:1-6
- Ahab evil king of Israel wives given to Ahab and 70 sons 1 Kings 20:1-9
  Ashur   2 wives 1 Chronicles 4:5
- Belshazzar King of Babylon wives and concubines Daniel 5:2
- Ben-Hadad King of Aram wives of Ahab 1 Kings 20:1-9
+ Caleb   1 wife and 2 concubines 1 Chonicles 2:18-19,46-48
+ David King of Israel and a man after God's own heart 12+ wives, 3+ concubines * 1 Samuel 18:27; 2 Samuel 3:2-4; 5:13; 11ch; 12:8; 1 Chronicles 3:1-5; 14:3
  Eliphaz   1 wife and 1 concubine Genesis 36:12
+ Elkanah   2 wives 1 Samuel 1:1-2
  Esau   4 wives Genesis 26:34; 28:9
+ Gideon   many wives and 70 sons Judges 8:30
+ Heman   God gave Heman fourteen sons and three daughters.    (may be by one wife) 1 Chronicles 25:4-5
  Isshiah son of Izrahiah many wives and children 1 Chronicles 7:3-4
+ Jacob   2 wives and 2 concubines Genesis 29; 30
+ Jair

judge of Israel

30 sons Judges 10:3-4
+ Jehoiachin

king of Judah

mulitple wives 2 Kings 24:15
  Jerahmeel   2 wives 1 Chronicles 2:25-26
  Jehoram

king of Israel

multiple wives 2 Chronicles 21:12-14
+ Joash righteous king of Judah 2 wives 2 Chronicles 24:2-3
  Joel son of Izrahiah many wives and children 1 Chronicles 7:3-4
  Lamech Pre-flood descendant of Cain 2 wives Genesis 4:19
  Manasseh   at least one concubine 1 Chronicles 7:14
  Mered   2 wives 1 Chronicles 4:17-18
  Michael son of Izrahiah many wives and children 1 Chronicles 7:3-4
+ Moses   possibly 2 wives not necessarily simultaneously Exodus 2:21; Numbers 12:1
  Nahor   1 wife and 1 concubine Genesis 22:20-24
  Obadiah son of Izrahiah many wives and children 1 Chronicles 7:3-4
+ Rehoboam   18 wives and 60 concubines 2 Chronicles 11:21
- Saul   at least 2 wives 1 Samuel 14:50; 2 Samuel 3:7
  Shaharaim   2 divorced wives and at least 1 not divorced 1 Chronicles 8:8
+ Solomon   700 wives and 300 concubines 1 Kings 11:3; 2 Kings 10:1; Song 6:8
  Terah   2 but not necessarily simultaneously Genesis 11:26; 20:12
  Xerxes king of Persia and husband of Esther wives and concubines Esther 2
+ Yahweh God Israel was 1 entity but divided into 2 kingdoms hence spoken of as 2 wives Jeremiah 3:6-10, 31:31-32; Ezekiel 23
  Zedekaih king of Judah multiple wives Jeremiah 38:19-23
Uncertain    Ziba   15 sons - (may be by one wife) 2 Samuel 9:10

* David's wives:
  1 - Michal, daughter of Saul, 1 Samuel 18:27
  1 - Ahinoam of Jezreel, 2 Samuel 3:2
  1 - Abigail, widow of Nabal, 2 Samuel 3:3
  1 - Maacah, daughter of Talmai, king of Geshur, 2 Samuel 3:3
  1 - Haggith, 2 Samuel 3:4
  1 - Abital, 2 Samuel 3:4
  1 - Eglah, 2 Samuel 3:5
  5+ -more concubines and wives in Jerusalem (implying at least 2 of each in addition to previous wives and at least one unnamed concubine), 2 Samuel 5:13
  1 - Bathsheba, 2 Samuel 11
  2+ -Saul's wives, 2 Samuel 12:8


Last Updated on 12/22/2000
By Jay Carper